8 Fresh & Filling Salad Recipes Perfect For A Bariatric Diet

By Bari Life

If You’re On A Bariatric Diet You Need To Try These 8 Delicious Salad Recipes That Satisfy!
Salads are boring, right? Lettuce, some veggies and a tasteless buffet-staple dressing and you’re in for a real treat… Not quite – this is not a list of your average “salad recipes.” These take the best aspects of a salad (healthy, low calorie and nutritious) and make them something you will turn to again and again after bariatric surgery. The key to success and staying on track after bariatric surgery is to find recipes and meals that you love while staying within your nutrition goals. What fun is enjoying your new life and new you if you can’t enjoy your meals? After all, the vast majority of our social lives revolve around food in one way or another. Check out these salad recipes and give them a try!

1. Cucumber, Black-Bean, Corn, Tomato and Avocado Salad

This salad combines a wealth of ingredients that bring healthy fats, complex carbohydrates and protein all together. Reduce the avocado to only 1/2 to reduce fat. The recipe is great as-is (after reducing avocado) for a bariatric patient on maintenance; however, if you are still enjoying your journey to your goal weight reduce the corn to 1/4 of a cup to 1/2 cup to cut out much of the carbohydrates. Typically you should shoot for 60 grams of carbohydrates while you are working toward your goal weight after bariatric surgery.

Makes 4 servings


1 English cucumber, diced

1 can black beans, rinsed

1 1/4 cups corn

1 red pepper, diced

1 cup cherry tomatoes

1/2 cup packed fresh cilantro, chopped

1 lime

1 avocado, diced

Salt and Pepper to taste


274 calories

22 g carbs

11.3 (6 if reducing avocado) g fat

10 g protein


2. Rainbow Power Salad with Roasted Chick Peas

Veggies can provide so many nutrients in our diet. But what about a more superficial benefit? Color! Seeing a beautifully colored meal in front of you makes the experience that much better. This recipe will please your eyes as much as it will you taste buds. The recipe nutrition is only for the salad. The creator of this salad adds a special, home-made dressing that packs a whopping 20 grams of (healthy) fat per serving. Skip that recipe and just add a nice fat-free balsamic vinaigrette.

Makes 2 servings


3 large tri-color carrots

1 medium zucchini

¼ cup fresh basil, cut into ribbons

1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1 tablespoon olive oil

½ teaspoon cumin

Salt and Pepper to taste


262 calories

37 g carbs

10 g fat

10 g protein


3. Grilled Steak with Baby Arugula and Parmesan Salad

Adding a protein to a salad is a great way to transform a bowl of leafy greens. Adding healthy grilled steak brings flavor nothing else can compete with! If you’ve never used arugula for the greens in your salad you are in for a treat. It is not just regular lettuce, the texture and peppery flavor really set this salad apart.

Makes 4 Servings


1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided

4 (4-ounce) flat-iron steaks

2 lemons, halved

1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

4 cups loosely packed baby arugula

1/4 cup (1 ounce) shaved fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese


258 calories

4 g carbs

16 g fat

25 g protein


4. BLT Salad with Avocado

The BLT – bacon lettuce and tomato. This combination has stood the test of time and remains a staple in kitchens everywhere. If you are a fan of bacon then you will love this low-calorie variation on a classic. Adding some avocado provides a great texture to compliment the crunch from the bacon.

Makes 4 Servings


12 slices lean, center-cut bacon, cooked and chopped

4 Roma tomatoes, chopped

1/4 cup light mayonnaise

1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

Fresh black pepper, to taste

6 cups chopped Romaine lettuce

1 medium (about 4 ounces) Hass avocado, diced


204 calories per serving

31 g carbs

14 g fat

10 g protein


5. Herbed Shrimp with Tomato-Spinach Salad

Shrimp is one of the leanest protein sources you can come by. It’s not too fishy so most can enjoy it (unless you are allergic to shellfish). It can take on so many great flavors and can be adapted for any taste you’re in the mood for. This relatively simple salad is sure to amaze and delight. One thing about shrimp is that it is naturally high in cholesterol – just FYI.

Makes 4 Servings


1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon honey

1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 cup heirloom grape tomatoes, halved

Cooking spray

4 cups baby spinach leaves

1/2 cup thinly sliced radicchio

1/2 cup thinly sliced fennel bulb

1/4 cup torn mint leaves

2 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (about 1/2 cup)


212 calories per serving

8 g carbs

11.4 g fat

19 g protein


6. Chicken, Red Potato, and Green Bean Salad

A salad with chicken and tomatoes may not jump out at you, but the dressing that goes along with this meal really makes it special. Make sure you don’t choose any dijon mustard or yellow mustard. The whole grain mustard has a special flavor and texture that is an integral piece of the recipe. If you are feeling lazy or are running short on time, don’t worry about cooking your own chicken and dicing it. Check out pre-grilled and cubed frozen chicken in the freezer section of your grocery store to make this recipe super easy.

Makes 4 Servings



1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley

3 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon whole-grain Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 garlic clove, minced


1 pound small red potatoes

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 pound diagonally cut green beans

2 cups cubed cooked chicken (about 8 ounces)

2 tablespoons chopped red onion

1 (10-ounce) package gourmet salad greens (about 6 cups)


269 calories per serving

26.1 g carbs

8.8 g fat

22.4 g protein


7. Grilled Chicken and Wheat-Berry Salad

Wheat berries are the kernel that gets ground into whole wheat flour. You just learned something new… maybe? Wheat berry has a great texture and flavor that provides some variance from the all-popular brown rice and quinoa. These take a little while to cook so you will need to plan ahead a bit for this recipe. It’s worth it, though!

Makes 16 Servings


4 cups water

1 cup hard winter wheat berries, rinsed and drained

1 bay leaf

2 cups baby spinach leaves, divided

1 cup green apple, peeled and cut into julienne strips

1/2 cup diced red bell pepper

3 tablespoons

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

4 (4-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breasts

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Cooking spray

1/4 cup chopped green onion


332 calories per serving

30 g carbs

12 g fat

29 g protein


8. Balsamic Watermelon Chicken Salad

Adding fruit to your salads is a great way to get your daily recommended servings of both fruits and vegetables. But we’ve never tried watermelon as the guest of honor. The sweetness of the watermelon and balsamic glaze combined with the light sprinkling of bleu cheese is something worth trying. Extend summer by adding watermelon to your salad! We reduced the olive oil and blue cheese crumbles to cut back on unnecessary fats to Avoid dumping syndrome! Reducing the oil and blue cheese to 1 tsp and 3 tablespoons cuts out almost 6 grams of fat per serving!

Makes 4 Servings


1 cup balsamic vinegar

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts

3 teaspoons all purpose seasoning (I used a spice mix I got at a specialty food store)

1 teaspoon olive oil

4 cups baby spinach or greens

cups cubed watermelon

3 tablespoons blue cheese crumbles

¼ cup sliced or crushed almonds


300 calories per serving

18 g carbs

9 g fat

28 g protein


What are your thoughts on these recipes? Let us know in the comments below!


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